A dewy, luminous complexion has never been more covetable—and as such, there are now countless products available to help us achieve said glow. But as much as we adore a great highlighter, the foundation of lit-from-within skin comes from, well, within. The food you eat has a direct impact on your complexion, so it might be time to see the contents of your fridge as an extension of your skincare regimen.
That said, some foods are obviously more beneficial than others—which is why we turned to Meryl Pritchard to share her ideal complexion-boosting menu. As a nutritionist and the founder of popular organic meal delivery service Kore Kitchen, Pritchard knows a thing or two about balancing and beautifying the body from the inside out. Below, she shares the foods (and supplements) that can clear acne, even skin tone, and even stop aging in its tracks.
Research shows that the fats found in avocado have a significant impact on your skin's collagen metabolism. (In other words, your avo addiction is keeping you young.) And because it's so versatile (and so delicious), you probably don't need to go out of your way to incorporate avocado in your diet. "It can easily be included in your breakfast, lunch, and dinner," says Pritchard. Bonus points if you use it as a mask, too—Pritchard loves this DIY recipe from Nutrition Stripped.
"It's full of vitamins (E and C, to be specific), antioxidants, and fatty acids that will help correct dark spots, hydrate the skin, and reduce fine lines," says Pritchard.
For proof of this little-known fruit's efficacy, consider the flawless glow of a certain supermodel. "Miranda Kerr swears by this rare superfood for her amazing skin," says Pritchard. "Noni is known for its healing and rejuvenating properties, is a powerful antioxidant, and has anti-inflammatory benefit as well." There is one slight caveat, however: "It does not taste pleasant," says Pritchard. "I can only equate it to prune juice that has turned. It's bitter, not sweet, and hard to get down. Take it as a shot it you need to, or try Miranda Kerr's Noni Glow Sticks ($55)."
Whether you're taking a supplement or getting your fill of bacteria-rich eats like kimchi and yogurt, probiotics are basically the food equivalent of Accutane: Research shows that by targeting inflammation and imbalances in the gut, this bacteria in turn has a clarifying effect on skin.
"The role of healthy gut flora is to consume bad bacteria and pathogens, thus boosting your immune system and keeping you healthy inside and out," explains Pritchard. "The skin and the GI tract are both organs for detoxification. When your gut is healthy, so are you—and so is your skin."
It's a really convenient way to get a ton of skin-boosting nutrients all at once—that is, if you drink the right formula. "Stay away from added sugars," warns Pritchard. "Focus on juices that have cucumber and/or celery as a base."
Salmon doesn't just give your skin a palpable glow—it also protects your skin from sun damage. (Two birds!) "Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which help keep your skin moist and glowing," says Pritchard. "And it also contains selenium, which helps protect skin from sun exposure."
In addition to being incredibly hydrating, coconut has natural antimicrobial and antifungal properties, which means it can help stop acne in its tracks.
It's not just about skin—collagen is a crucial component of all our connective tissue and makes up about a quarter of the body's protein. That being said, collagen tends to deteriorate as we age—and one of the side effects is a loss of skin elasticity. "That's why we acquire more wrinkles," says Pritchard. "Taking a collagen supplement will help improve the elasticity and moisture in your skin. We actually naturally produce collagen in our bodies, but taking a supplement helps improve the body's production process."